SEASIDE - Seaside offers destinations beyond the beach and Broadway.

The contention of the Gateway 2010 Committee is that Seaside can provide a rich experience that includes education and sight-seeing for visitors and locals alike. To guide those seeking the delights of Seaside off the beaten path, a new guide is being introduced over the next six weeks - the Passport to Seaside.

The passport is an aerial map that highlights 12 of Seaside's less touted but important areas of interest. Some of those sites include the Cove, the Lewis and Clark Salt Cairn, Broadway Park, the Necanicum Estuary, Goodman Park and the Seaside Historical Museum. Each of these sites is presented as part of a self-guided tour, engaging the venturer with a question relating to each area visited.

"This is an excellent tool to promote the broader aspects of our town. It's great for kids - they learn some history, some science and have fun," said Seaside Chamber of Commerce Director Alan Smiles. "If they answer all the questions on the passport, they can go to the Visitors Bureau, Sunset Pool or the Interpretive Center adjacent to North Gateway Park and get a prize."

In an effort to establish a National Heritage Area that encompasses the North Coast and southern tip of Washington, members of the Gateway 2010 Committee attended a workshop on how to enhance the project. The passport is a pilot program the committee is hoping will work in conjunction with the National Heritage Area efforts.

Other members of the community have stepped forward to give the passport a test run. Mary Blake, director of Sunset Empire Park and Recreation District, is heading the testing of the route and information.

"This will be another fun way to play in Seaside. We'll have local kids and families as well as visitors check it out for problems and improvements," said Blake.

Passports can be picked up at the Seaside Visitors Bureau, Sunset Pool, the Gateway Interpretive Center and various locations in downtown Seaside.


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